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utu
12-04-2014, 05:17 PM
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Here is something that promises a lot of exciting new features:
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A LiveUSB with initramfs treatment deriving from Knoppix minirt.gz;
a resistant fork from Debian's systemd decision;
a 140 Mb 64-bit iso to build on (among other choices); and
an organized arrangement of how-to documentation.
Architecture seems similar to Debian-Live squashfs, but
using much more up-to-date kernels.
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See Distrowatch notice for antiX 14.3 "MX":
2014-12-04 Distribution Release: antiX 14.3 "MX"
http://distrowatch.com/?newsid=08724
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Exerpts from:
http://download.tuxfamily.org/antix/docs-antiX-13/live-boot/index.html
Whatís New?
The linuxrc bootstrap script (that lives inside the initrd.gz file)
was almost totally rewritten. We now use a non-ancient version of BusyBox
(which, combined with more modern Linux kernels) gives us access to new
and better tools. The Knoppix linuxrc script provided great inspiration
for a lot of this.
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Live remastering
Remastering involves (perhaps among other things) the creation of a new
linuxfs file that reflects change that have been made to the system
(usually the addition or deletion of packages). We can now offer users
"one click" live remastering (for LiveUSBs and LiveHDs) that will create
a new linuxfs file at the touch of a button and automatically use that
linuxfs file on the next reboot. The user will always have the option
to rollback the change even if the new linuxfs file is corrupted and
fails to boot.
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Exerpts from:
http://download.tuxfamily.org/antix/docs-antiX-13/live-boot/live_usb.html#_adding_goodies
Remastering
...
The only thing the LiveUSB creator has to do to enable live-remastering
is to make sure there is enough room on the boot partition for another
linuxfs file. The standard antiX-12 linuxfs files range in size from
110 Meg to 670 Meg. The size of a new linuxfs file will depend on the size
of the original linuxfs file and also on how much has been added or subtracted.
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See current listed iso files in testing directory:
http://sourceforge.net/projects/antix-linux/files/Testing/antiX-14R/

utu
12-08-2014, 04:48 AM
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A fairly good MX-14.3 pae review here:
http://mylinuxexplore.blogspot.com/2014/04/antix-mx-14-symbiosis-review-truly.html

Although, Blogspot review doesn't do MX-14.3 pae complete justice, IMO.
Really nice CD-size iso; fairly late model kernel; 32-bit with pae kernel; XFCE 4.10
Apps include Iceweasel, Synaptic, NetworkManager, LibreOffice, GParted.
LiveUSB has built-in on-line remastering, uses squashfs. Broadcom wifi well-supported.
On-line in short-order using Universal USB installer, making usb directly from iso.
Pledges to remain non-systemd indefinitely. Doesn't do UEFI, however.

MX-14.3 pae is a joint anti-X/Mepis product, not to be confused with a very recent
amd64 precurser by Anti-X alone which uses systemd & wicd, and very different desktop.

Werner P. Schulz
12-09-2014, 12:16 AM
Thank you for the comment about antiX 14.3 "MX". This Live-System made a great impression on me. The big advantage is that it isn't a mix of stable and testing Debian and not of Gnome and KDE.

I'm testing it using an ISO install to HD (frugal install) within my Debian installation on /dev/sda5


make a new dir '/AntiX'
use MidnightCommander and open the file 'MX-14.3-pae.iso' with [Enter]
you'll see a folder '/antiX'; open it with [Enter]
you'll see some files; copy 'vmlinuz' and 'initrd.gz' to the new '/AntiX'
leave the folder '/antiX' and close the file 'MX-14.3-pae.iso'
rename the file 'MX-14.3-pae.iso' to 'antix.iso' and move it to '/AntiX'

In my Debian install I'm using Grub2; therefore I changed the file '/etc/grub.d/40_custom'

#!/bin/sh
exec tail -n +3 $0
# This file provides an easy way to add custom menu entries. Simply type the
# menu entries you want to add after this comment. Be careful not to change
# the 'exec tail' line above.
menuentry "AntiX" {
linux (hd0,5)/AntiX/vmlinuz bdev=sda5 fromiso=/AntiX/antix.iso antiX=LMX persist vga=791 lang=de
initrd (hd0,5)/AntiX/initrd.gz
}### END /etc/grub.d/40_custom ###
Change the values (hd0,5) and sda5 as you need it. "(hd0,5)" means 1st device and 5th partition

Don't forget "update-grub"!

utu
12-09-2014, 01:17 AM
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Greetings, Werner.

I'm pleased with my MX-14.3 pae LiveUSB, so far. Using an 8 Gb SanDisk.
2 or 4 Gb is just too small to attempt on-line remastering. 2 Gb worked
ok as a simple LiveUSB, but that's not where the magic is to be found.

I've done one on-line remastering which seems to have been successful.
I don't have a specific feel for what's going on behind the scenes, but
adding 100 mb to the original squashfs seemed to take about five minutes.
That felt pretty familiar. The kernel is 32-bit smp and the remastering
print-out did actually acknowledge my two cpus.

XFCE not much different than LXDE.
NetworkManager seems to work smoother without systemd, so that's a plus.

Geany isn't in the basic iso, and no repo for it in MX's synaptic, so that's
one area we'll both want to remedy. Otherwise, the CD-size is is very much
to my taste.

I'll be pleased to hear your comments on MX's remastering.

utu
12-09-2014, 08:00 PM
Geany isn't in the basic iso, and no repo for it in MX's synaptic, so that's
one area we'll both want to remedy.
Here's your Christmas present, Werner:

Add this repo to MX-14's Synaptic and reload:
http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian

Then bring in geany & geany-common; after that,
go to MainMenu>Development>Geany

Voila.

Tried it out using geany .bashrc in a terminal; worked ok.

philo
12-10-2014, 11:52 AM
AntiX' very own Main Page, User and Howto articles make me much less enthusiastic.

If you have enough free time on your hands, you can read them by starting here:
http://antix.mepis.org/index.php?title=Main_Page

Werner P. Schulz
12-10-2014, 01:36 PM
Geany isn't in the basic iso, and no repo for it in MX's synaptic,Strange! After "aptitude update" I could install geany without any change of the sources.list.

Werner P. Schulz
12-10-2014, 01:49 PM
AntiX' very own Main Page, User and Howto articles make me much less enthusiastic.It's better to study
http://www.mepiscommunity.org/doc_mx/
and
http://www.mepiscommunity.org/doc_mx/advanced.html

utu
12-10-2014, 03:24 PM
MX-14.3 pae is a joint anti-X/Mepis product, not to be confused with a very recent
amd64 precurser by Anti-X alone which uses systemd & wicd, and very different desktop.

I agree with both of you, Philo & Werner.
I think it is the antX/Mepis collaboration MX-14.3 pae which is exceptional.
Having also built the 64 Bit-antiX, I'm much less enamored with that.

My experiece with MX-14.3 pae makes me believe it may be somewhat better
(more current) than its documentation. I haven't had any problems with it.
Mine is an 8 Gb SanDisk LiveUSB, currently using about 4 Gb including 1 Gb
of r/w persistence. I've remastered linuxfs up to about 870 MB by adding
geany and a few other small comforts & tweaks.

My impression is that UEFI is about the only thing that needs much more
attention in MX-14.3. My 64-bit Win8 UEFI works fine with Knoppix, but I'm
not sure its UEFI would work with a 32-bit pae Linux kernel. Using legacy
boot would spoil the cleanness of Win8 booting both Linux & Windows without
intervention by some grub or OEM process.

philo
12-10-2014, 04:37 PM
@ Werner

I went through that extra reading material but I sill fail to fall 'enamored' like utu seems to be (now with caveats I must admit).

Knoppix can better help more people come to love Linux, even those with old hardware.

utu
12-30-2014, 02:05 AM
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After using MX-14.3 for a little while, I'm quite impressed with it.
The following is an attempt to compare it with Knoppix and other LiveUSBs.
I'd be pleased to get other folks perspective on any of this.



MX-14.3 LiveUSB Characteristics vs Other liveUSB Configurations & Comments

Major & Moderate differences:
persistence on fat32 partition vs reiserfs filesize limited to ~4 Gb.
menu-driven persistence modes vs cheatcodes built-in more desirable.
built-in re-mastering mode vs none built-in more desirable; rollback is essential.
cd-size iso vs dvd-size cd-size is better to build on;
developer(s) often on forums vs not frequent contact can be helpful.
wl driver for Broadcom wifi vs b43 more difficult wifi install if wl is chosen default.
32-bit pae kernel vs 64-bit 64-bit may be essential to uefi.
no uefi boot support vs uefi having both uefi & legacy support may be more desirable;
depends on competence of uefi firmware.
no systemd vs systemd no systemd may be more desirable;
fewer regressive surprises likely w/o systemd.
squashfs for persistence vs cloop rolling release may be impossible with cloop
hard-drive install option vs 0wn rolling release fundamentally enables version upgradability.
rolling-release distro vs not rolling-release is more desirable.
single partition configuration vs not ... good & bad ...


Small differences & identicalities:
xfce graphical cpu monitor vs lxde's lxde much superior.
use made of .bashrc vs not this is a useful feature.
xfce vs lxde xfce frame controls don't crash like lxde's.
analog desktop clock vs digital analog clock may be too small to read.
whisker menu vs ???? whisker menu easier to search for apps.
install usb from iso vs same equivalent options, roughly so.
mkliveusb option(s) vs same equivalent options, roughly so.
thunar vs pcmanfm equivalent file managers.
synaptic, geany, gparted vs same identical applications.
iceweasel, NetworkManager vs same identical applications.
leafpad, ttf-mscorefonts vs same identical applications.
libreoffice & many others vs same identical applications.

Werner P. Schulz
01-03-2015, 06:49 PM
Thank you for this comparison!

You mention the "hard-drive install option ". For many people in the MX & MEPIS forum the HD install is the standard and the use of antiX/MX as a Live system on CD or USB is the option. The other way to remaster is to create a snapshot of your HD installation and to build a new USB stick by "live usb".

For me the big advantage of antiX/MX is, it's a "rolling-release distro" and you have not the different version problem as with Knoppix.

"single partition configuration" - you can always use additional partitions: edit the '/etc/fstab' and use a sysmlink to this partition.

"analog desktop clock" - change the setting from analog to digital or use DateTime clock in the panel (and the panel for example at the top instead of at the left side).

Greetings Werner

utu
01-03-2015, 07:19 PM
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Thank you for your comments, Werner.

The rolling release is a big improvement. However, I just found out
from anti himself that I cant upgrade the kernel with a liveUSB.

I'd be just as happy with a small non-persistence /home partition,
maybe not even squashed.

You can scale the analog clock simply by widening the Xfce panel width
just a little, so that's not really a problem.

My remaining hangup with MX is: I only have a hazy feeling for the configuration.
Somehow, I've remastered half a dozen times and it's still intact and working.

I don't know why the antis don't just copy Klaus' uefi scheme which allows
an either/or approach to legacy/uefi.

I have decoded the MX initrd.gz and put its init in geany for browsing.
Nice looking code by BitJam, about 4000 lines of bash. Still could use a
roadmap.

MX also has an aufs dependence like Knoppix which may be in danger if
aufs gets thrown out of the kernel.

utu
01-03-2015, 07:45 PM
You mention the "hard-drive install option ". For many people in the MX & MEPIS forum the HD install is the standard and the use of antiX/MX as a Live system on CD or USB is the option. The other way to remaster is to create a snapshot of your HD installation and to build a new USB stick by "live usb".
I had in mind some comparison with Knoppix's 0wn 'HD install' which always required some caveats.
It is clear the MX 'live' approach is an extension of the poor-man's (HD) install as a means of making a LiveUSB.